Accessibility Checker in Word

Microsoft Word’s built-in accessibility checker won’t catch everything. It doesn’t fix problems for you, either. But it will help you find and fix a lot of things. It’s a great way to learn.

What the Checker Won’t Do

If your headings are text made big and bold, not real headings,  the accessibility checker won’t see a problem. So you will also have to  check headings yourself.

The checker will tell you if an image has no alternative text. But it can’t tell if an image has inaccurate or badly-written alternative text.  So you must check all images, even if the checker says they are OK.

You’ll also have to check whether your page is using 

  • tabs where it should use a table, 
  • fonts, like Wingdings, where it should use images, 
  • or images where it should use text. 

So the checker is no substitute for knowing how to use Word.

Finally, the checker only finds problems, it does not fix them. It will tell you why and how to fix them, though.

Use the Checker in Word

  1. Click the “Review” tab on the ribbon.
  2. Click the “Check Accessibility” icon. (Or in the “Tools” menu, click “Check Accessibility.”)
  3. In the pane that appears beside your document, you see a list of  accessibility issues. Click an issue to highlight it in your document.  The accessibility checker will suggest for how to fix the problem you’ve selected.

Accessibility Checker Video

A Microsoft video demonstrates the accessibility checker in Word for Windows.